“You’re a bad friend” those words once rang in my head like sirens blaring. I never thought I would hear that phrase from such a close friend. It broke me down. You can think you did all you could do for a friendship, but someone can perceive it in a whole different way. I learned some serious lessons about friendship. And the main one is that I am not always a victim. Sometimes I am the problem. Sometimes I am a bad friend. It was a tough pill to swallow, and it took losing a friend to learn this about me.
She was one of my closest friends throughout high school and college. We had so many memories and inside jokes. We would literally FIGHT ANYONE FOR EACH OTHER! However, we ain’t really know how to fight nor did we actually throw hands. (We weren’t trying to get suspended. She was my shoulder to cry on and so was I for her. There was one time she literally yelled at a guy that she thought broke my heart lol! And that’s GANG!
When she transferred to the same college like me, I thought it was going to be a great time. The dynamic duo was back at it again!
After a while, we stopped to see each other as much. And we talked less and less. I hit her up after months and no answer. It was strange… I always thought it was because of her relationship. I was single, my junior year of undergrad and I wanted to be sensitive to the fact that she wanted to spend more time with her boyfriend. I took time to do my own thing and would check on her less and less.
As the friendship dwindled, I didn’t think anything of it. I would text and she didn’t answer. I went out with some other friends from high school one day and my close friend came up in conversation. When I asked how she was doing, my other friend told me she wasn’t speaking to me anymore. When I asked why she replied. She said you are a bad friend your not supportive.
That crushed me so hard. I immediately got defensive and started cutting so deep with insults. She wasn’t even at the table. I’ll be honest, I was hurt. I couldn’t believe that she would say that I was not a good friend. I listed in my head all the things that were wrong with her and how amazing I WAS AS A FRIEND. (HOW VAIN OF ME! I can admit that now)
Many times, we think about when we were hurt by a friend. Sometimes we need to call ourselves out. What did we do? We are not always the one who was wronged. Never think that you can be the only one hurt in a situation. It took a lot of honest conversations with myself to understand that I needed to do better as a friend.
Did I fail after that? Absolutely! I am extremely self-aware and not naive enough to think I am a perfect friend. I am someone who struggles to keep close relationships bat bay because I am forgetful. I literally have to Google Calendar in check-ins with friends. Gaining self-awareness since my falling out with my close friend helped me get on track. While I still struggle, I had to look inside myself and say: Hey, I was not there for my friend as I should have been.
This was one of the hardest pills to swallow! Before that, I thought I was a great friend. I thought I was so supportive. I often would complain to other friends about our falling out thinking that she was to blame because she did not come to me with her issues. But how many times do people address us and we simply ignore the needs they have because our egos are ringing louder than their voices in our head? Sometimes our shit stinks and we can fix it.
In the world of IG, Facebook, TIKTOK, & Twitter we have to not just be friends for show but we have to be friends in real life. Reposts and birthday shoutouts don’t mean anything. To be a good friend you need to show and prove not post to prove your friendship. Show up when your friend really needs it. Be there how they need you to be there for them not how you want them to be there for you. Friendships are a very selfless experience. You have to shed your own ego and pride when that person really needs you.
Though our relationship has run its course, I am old enough to acknowledge my part in the situation and do better. If someone pops in my head I reach out at that moment. I speak life into my friend now, and if I have a problem I address it head-on. But, I also do my best to take the time out to fully understand the needs of my friends. If they confront me with something I validate their experience and try my best to correct my behaviors. It’s all about growing into a better version of your friend. To be a better friend you need to be self-aware.
6 thoughts on “I’m a Bad Friend”
I definitely agree and some friendships aren’t meant to last forever
I think the rise of social networking and media has definitely lead to a lot of ‘performative’ friendships. That causes insecurity in people. But yes self awareness is necessary for personal development
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I absolutely loved this. I can be forgetful and so consumed with my own life that I forget to check on my friends. Probably why I haven’t had a best friend since high school.
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Thank you, sometimes it’s okay to leave friends behind. Some people are seasonal!
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Thanks so much, crystal!